68 °F Ulsan, KR
27 °F Portland, US


Map of South KoreaUlsan Metropolitan City

Officially known as  Ulsan Metropolitan City, Ulsan is South Korea‘s 7th largest metropolis with a population of over 1.1 million. Ulsan’s citizens are highly educated and youthful; the average age is 33.

Ulsan is located in the south-east of the country, neighboring Busan to the south and facing East Sea (Sea of Japan) to the east.

Map Credit: CIA World Fact Book


Ulsan is the industrial powerhouse of South Korea.  Three major industriesautomobile manufacturing, shipbuilding, and petro-chemical products–form the heart of the Ulsan Industrial District,  which is home to the world’s largest automobile assembly plant operated by the Hyundai Motor Company, the world’s largest shipyard operated by Hyundai Heavy Industries and the world’s largest oil refinery, owned by SK Energy; and hundreds of satelite businesses and R & D centers that serve these industries.

Other major companies in Ulsan include:  Hyundai Mipo Dockyard, the 4th largest shipbuilder in the world and other leading petro-chemical companies such as Eastman, Mobil, Dupoint, BASF, and Solvay.

As a global-industrial port city, Ulsan boasts the largest industrial harbor in Korea.

With an export value $78.8 billing USD, Ulsan’s production is 13.1% of the total industrial output of Korea.  Ulsan produces 35% of the petrochemical output in Korea, and 16% of the world’s ships.

A new industry taking hold in Ulsan is renewable energy, particularly, rechargeablae automobile and small batteries an dwind turbans.  A “Green Energy City” is also being developed.

The city boasts a per captial GDP of $45,000 USD, twice the Korean national average.

Environmental Restoration

Ulsan is fast becoming an eco-friendly city by improving its environment, ecology, and quality of life for its citizens.  With beautiful mountains, clean and clear rivers and the deep blue sea, Ulsan has been changing itself into an eco-friendly ecolgoy city by thoroughly coordinating preservation and development for the last 20 years.


Ulsan is also working to revive the cultural traditions of its 5000 year history, as well as develop contemporary traditions that blend both old with new.  Traditionally a fishing village, Ulsan is known for fresh seafood.  The area around Ulsan is also historically well known for ceramics and pottery.

Recent improvements include clean-up of the Taehwa River that runs through the middle of the city, and the development of ulsan Grand Park.


The city is home to 2 soccer teams:  the K-League Ulsan Hyundai Horang-i (Ulsan Hyundai Tigers), and the Korea National League Ulsan Mipo Dockyard soccer team.

Educational Institutions

Ulsan is home to several universities and colleges, including the University of Ulsan.

Economic & cultural heritage 

Originally a traditional coastal whaling/fishing town and market center, Ulsan was transformed into an industrial city in iin1962 and continuing through the 1980s.  As part of South Korea’s first five-year economic plan, Ulsan became an open port in the 1960s. Additionally, major industrial plants and factories were developed, including in particular an oil refinery, fertiliser plants, automobile production and heavy industries.

The 1990s & early 2000s brought urban renewal,  ecological restoration and preservation, and cultural development to the city.   Historical and scenic sites,  cultural festivals, and international events now showcase the regions cultural heritage.   Today, Ulsan is an ecopolis– simultainously embracing industry and dynamic growth with strong attention to a restored, balanced and beautiful environment, and and vibrant, healthy internationally-minded community rich in art & culture.

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2015 Video about Ulsan >>

2012 Video about Ulsan >>

More info, including photos is available at www.facebook.com/Portland.Ulsan



Ulsan. (2012, February 28). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 02:11, March 3, 2012, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ulsan&oldid=479281295

Ulsan Metropolitan City official website,  http://www.ulsan.go.kr/english/